Indiana’s Restored Theaters in Terre Haute

Terre Haute’s Indiana Theatre was purchased by Rob Lundstrom in April 2013 and renovations began that same year. According his nephew, Logan Lundstrom, “He grew up in Terre Haute and always thought the building had potential to be a viable business.”

Designed by John Eberson, known as the “architect of operatic grandeur,” the Indiana is a special building that has relevance as a cultural and tourism opportunity for both Terre Haute and Indiana. “As we understand the chronology in the development of Eberson’s signature architectural style known as ‘Atmospheric Theatre,’ the Indiana Theatre is the first partial atmospheric prototype which started his entire design style, which we’ve been told became the gold standard of American Theatre design in the 1900s.” says Lundstrom. The term describes the way Eberson used themes inspired by the Mediterranean as well as Europe and the Classical world.

Opening on January 22, 1922, the Indiana, which is on National Register of Historic Places, is just a half block away from the Eberson- designed Hippodrome which opened six years earlier and is reportedly the oldest surviving theater built for Vaudeville in the United States.

“It’s also worth noting that for Terre Haute to have two Eberson theatres within a block of each other is quite remarkable, and we are likely the only city in the world to have this distinction,” says Lundstrom. He notes that Eberson, whose creations can be found as far away as Australia, also designed the Paramount in Anderson, Indiana. His Spanish courtyard design of the Paramount included eclectic ornamentation, unique statuaries, a beautiful trellis adorned with floral and ivy, and a magical night sky complete with hundreds of twinkling stars. Not only did the opulent décor of the Paramount distinguish itself from the neighboring theatres, but the 36 foot tall and 69 inches wide Paramount blade marquee became a familiar sight in downtown Anderson.

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